Credit Score in Hephzibah>Question Details

Barbara  A…, Home Buyer in Hephzibah, GA

what your credit score need to be to buy a home the first time?

Asked by Barbara A Merriweather, Hephzibah, GA Fri Sep 7, 2007

Help the community by answering this question:


Just in email from one of the mortgage reps we work with.... an email with the subject line
"640 is the new 620" The content of the email explained that the credit crisis continues unabated. Decoded what this meant was that in order to get a prime rate, what one used to be able to accomplish with a 620 score, one would now need to be a bit stronger. While there are fewer lenders participating in subprime, these still exist, but with larger down payments and higher interest rates.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Sep 7, 2007
Deborah Madey, Real Estate Pro in Red Bank, NJ
What is a good credit score to buy a home around 132,00.00?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jun 27, 2013
What do our credit line have to be to buy a house in atl ga?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri May 31, 2013
Probably a minimum of 620 with FHA financing as well as good employment history & proper income, debt to income ratio, etc.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun May 5, 2013
what credit score is needed for first time buyer
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun May 5, 2013
Hi Barbara,

Today, you need at least a 640 credit score to qualify for FHA Insured Mortgage financing.

We see many credit reports with low credit scores (anything less than 620), and often many scores in the 500's. This is BAD credit. If you are one of the folks affected by this terrible economy, you have a low credit score and you have a dream of buying a home, here's some simple advice for you.

First, settle any outstanding debt. If you owe money on collection accounts, charge-offs and/or judgments, make payment arrangements and get these accounts paid promptly.

Next, begin rebuilding your credit. If you have current accounts with good payment histories, or even some previous late-payment-blemishes, make sure you continue to pay those accounts on time. If you do not have any existing credit accounts then you'll need to establish several in order to create a viable credit history.

I have found that CONSUMER ACTION is an excellent resource for objective advice on all things credit related. You'll find free and sincere advice on everything from settling collection accounts to rebuilding credit to building credit from scratch on their website.

Beware of anyone offering to "repair" your credit! The Federal Trade Commission issued a stern warning last year that such offers are scams. Find more from the FTC HERE.

The best way to buy a home is to have a decent credit history combined with sufficient Income and Assets for a home purchase.

The best way to have a decent credit history is to settle negative outstanding obligations and pay all your bills on time for at least two years.

Trevor Curran
NMLS #40140
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Apr 28, 2012
As of 01/10/20111, 2 of 3 credit scores need to be above 640 to get a loan. The bank then take an average of the three scores to determine rates.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 10, 2011
Hi Barbara, your question is old but good...

Got two relevant things for you to read -- this is a blog excerpt from Bill Zielinski...


The FHA is introducing new guidelines on loan to value ratios and the minimum credit score required for FHA borrowers. As detailed in a Mortgagee Letter from the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the following credit requirements will apply for FHA borrowers, effective October 4, 2010.

* To be eligible for maximum financing, borrowers will need a minimum credit score of 580 or higher.
* Borrowers with a credit score between 500 and 579 will be limited to a loan to value of 90%. A sub 580 FICO credit score borrower will henceforth need to make a 10% minimum down payment on a purchase transaction.
* All borrowers with a credit score below 500 will not be eligible for FHA-insured mortgage financing.

HUD’s newly introduced minimum credit score and loan to value requirements will apply to all single family loan programs, except for Reverse Mortgages (Home Equity Conversion Mortgages) and Hope for Homeowners.

The new credit requirements are not expected to dramatically change the number of FHA mortgage approvals. Most lenders had already imposed a minimum credit score requirement of 640 or higher for FHA borrowers. In limited cases, borrowers with scores between 620 and 639 could still obtain mortgage approval.

Many potential FHA borrowers with scores below 640 who cannot obtain mortgage approval may be left wondering why this is the case if the FHA has established a minimum score of only 580. The explanation for this is that the FHA does not make mortgage loans but rather insures FHA loans made by lenders. Despite the FHA insurance, banks do not have an iron clad protection from loss.

... rest of that blog at…

And I wrote a 10 part blog called "Top 10 Credit Myths" which is good..
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Oct 9, 2010
Since the rules can change quickly, you want to make sure you have the best credit score possible, and have your report reviewed for any discrepancies or inaccurate information. Please call (347) 746-8738 with any questions you might have.
Web Reference:
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Oct 7, 2010
Not to mention after reading below, I see that last year someone claimed that Bank of America had no minimum score. Well, we just got an announcement from them that they upped their minimum from 620 to 640.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Oct 3, 2010
It's been more than 3 years since Barbara asked this question, and on something like this, if people don't realize this fact, and read the answers, they will get the totally wrong idea about what can happen. The world of mortgages has been turned totally upside down since 2007, when there were still a few sub-prime lenders around, and FHA loans could be had iwth low 500 scores.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Oct 3, 2010
Best options are available at a credit score of 620+. Best rates, widest options. Credit should be repaired if less than this.

For more tips read my blog, Top 10 Credit Myths. Worth your time. Link below. Good luck Barbara!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Oct 3, 2010
Any buyer can be approved for a mortgage loan with good credit worthiness. This includes work history, available cash reserves, bill payment history, salary, job stability, and debt to income ratio. Obviously the higher your FICO score the better your chances are for a loan with a favorable interest rate. A Veterans Administration (VA) loan require 0% down, FHA requires 3.5% down and Conventional loans requires 5 % down. I work with a few great lenders in the Greater Augusta area (CSRA) and currently most lenders require a minimum of a 620 credit score. I have three lenders that still only require a 600 credit score. I CURRRNTLY HAVE ONE LENDER THAT STILL ONLY REQUIRES A 580 CREDIT SCORE, CAN YOU BELIEVE IT!

Tye Caldwell Sr.
REALTOR® - Keller Wiliams Realty Augusta Partners

Sell or Buy with TYE
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Oct 25, 2009
To answer your question, on FHA some lenders (like Bank of America) have no minimum FICO score.

I have a great mini series on my blog about credit scoring. Check it out.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Oct 10, 2009
Hi Barbara,
This is a very good question and we as real estate professionals are given varied answers at times from different lenders. My question to all of the realtors that are saying 580, what lender is accepting a 580 credit score? In the meantime Barbara, I have seen lenders requiring a 620 minimum score and I have not had one client turned down with this score yet. However, each lender may look at your credit differently. I have a variety of lenders I work with and am willing to put you in contact with one of your choice, because they are the experts in that area.
Thank you for your interest,

Janet Robinson------ Right Realtor, Right Time, Right Place, Robinson Right Way Home!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Sep 23, 2009

First time home buyers can be approved for loans with credit ratings in the high five hundreds to the seven hundreds. Obviously the higher your score the better your chances for a loan with a favorable interest rate. Lenders look at you as being less risk with a higher score and reward borrowers with better interest rates.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 31, 2008
If you visit the USDA Rural Housing website, you will find that no credit score is required on direct housing loans. On guaranteed loans, I believe the minimum is 580. The USDA looks for an ability to repay obviously through alternative credit such as how borrower paid rent and utilities, etc.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 31, 2008

This question was just asked of a few lenders with whom I've recently worked. The answer was that they could still offer mortgages to borrowers with scores as low as 580, provided there are no recent bankrupcties, charge offs, etc. You would be wise to speak with one of them so that your specific needs can be addressed.

Meanwhile, please look over the blog at the link below for information on programs available in Georgia to first time home buyers to help them with their down payments (grants, loans, more) and home buyer education resources. Then call me for an initial confidential consultation so that we can help determine the right lender for your specific needs.

Please call me if there is anything else that you need.

Solomon Greene
REALTOR® / Consultant - Keller Williams Realty Atlanta Partners
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Dec 31, 2008
it has to be a 620 single filing
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Dec 30, 2008

The closer to 700, or better is where we should all shoot for. You will get your best rates. You can get a mortgage even in the 500 range, but your interest rates will be higher, and not all lenders will lend with low scores. If you ahev a large down payment, to off-set the risk of the lender, you might have a better chance of getting a decent rate if your scores are marginal. FHA loan do allow for lower than average scores and you can still go in with little down. You will need to have 3% into the deal..which can count closing costs, etc.. Some of those closing costs can actually be wrapped into the mortgage. If this is your senario, find a REALTOR and most important;y, a lender, that handles and is comfortable with FHA loans. If someone tells you they don't handle them, find someone else to help you. In NY State, we have state funded loans FOR first time buyers, Look into your State and see IF they have such programs. In NY, the interest rates are usually better than average, but funds are limited. If you need an agent to work with, I can easily refer you to someone in your community that is experienced and knowledgeable. Just let me know. There is no cost or obligation, just some help.

Good Luck
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Nov 9, 2007
Where are all the mortgage pros on this question? Given the history of events and changes over the last year in the mortgage industry, my best recommendation to you, Barbara, would be to speak with a reputable bank or mortgage lender to discuss your financing options, score particulars, monthly payments and short-to-long term financing goals. If you are not presently working with a Realtor, consider hiring a full-time buyer's agent to represent your best interests in the transaction. He or she should also be able to refer you to at least 3 or more preferred lenders with whom they trust and have a successful track record working with their clients.
Web Reference:
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Nov 9, 2007
TED SHOOP, Real Estate Pro in Buford, GA
There is not really a good answer for this but any lower than 620 would make it tough to do anything these days.
Web Reference:
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Nov 8, 2007
Barbara, as you can see there are ways to get a loan with less than perfect credit. Keep in mind if you are building a score to get a loan, the better your score the better your interest rate.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Sep 9, 2007
The higher the better....but you can defintely qualiy for FHA in the 500s. If ACORN is available in your area, you should be able to qualify in the id 600s. The better your score and the more money you have down will help your overall situation. FHA loans only require 3% doen. Good luck!
Web Reference:
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Sep 7, 2007
Cindi Hagley, Real Estate Pro in San Ramon, CA
Your credit score can be in the 500 plus range and obtain an FHA loan. A convention loan would be about a 640'ish credit score. The higher the score the better the financing will be. Check with a good mortgage company to see what programs are available based on your credit and finances.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Sep 7, 2007
Pam Winterba…, Real Estate Pro in San Ramon, CA
There are actually loans still available with scores in the high 500's, but the interest rates would be somewhat higher the lower your score. If you would like a lead on a potential lender just let me know. Thanks - Steve
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Sep 7, 2007
hi, I don't have good credit. i can put down 20%. i have land to sell also. will that help me get a first time home loan?
Flag Sun Nov 24, 2013
I think it's 620 or higher if you want a somewhat decent interest rate. The three brackets are 620, 680 and 720. A loan agent can tell you more about qualification requirements. You should also find out about first time buyer and downpayment assistant programs. Good luck to you.
Web Reference:
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Sep 7, 2007
Ute Ferdig -…, Real Estate Pro in Newcastle, CA
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